Books / beatrice hitchman

Beatrice Hitchman: Negotiating with the Dead

By lou trimby, Friday Nov 6, 2015

Beatrice Hitchman is an acclaimed Bristol based writer whose 2013 debut novel ‘Petite Mort’ was adapted for BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour, long-listed for the Desmond Elliott Prize, the Authors Club first novel prize and shortlisted for the Polari Prize and the Historical Writers Association Debut Novel Prize.

She will be giving a talk entitled ‘Negotiating with the Dead: Writing Lesbian Historical Fiction’ at the Golden Guinea (Function Room), Redcliffe on Saturday 4 November at 2.00pm. This talk will consider the ethical detective work of researching a novel and what writers owe – or don’t owe – to communities of the dead.

The 19th century gay woman, in search of one of her own kind, had a distinctive badge: a magnificent, curled, trimmed, sometimes beribboned poodle. For one social commentator this was a typical lesbian in fin-de-siècle Paris: poodle-toting, cruising on the Champs-Elysees, or fighting as part of two warring gangs.

This is the kind of period detail a novelist loves. But how reliable is the witness? And how does an historical novelist start and complete writing a past that’s complicated by bias or plain old invisibility? These and other relevant topics will be covered during this fascinating talk which will be of interest to readers and writers alike.

Saturday 14th November 2015. 2pm to 4pm, The Function Room,  Golden Guinea,  19 Guinea Street,  Bristol,  BS1 6SX. Free (but donations to OutStories Bristol welcome)    

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